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What is a network firewall?

A firewall is a network security system that monitors and controls the flow of traffic between networks. They are designed to protect your network from attacks and should be installed on any network to safeguard against malware, hackers, and other threats.

What does a network firewall do?

Have you ever wondered what exactly a firewall is or what it does? With cyber-attacks on the rise combined with the almost daily news headlines announcing that even more, aggressive threats are just a click away. We can sometimes overlook the simplest steps to help protect the businesses that we have worked so hard to make successful.

Network firewalls can be set up in a variety of ways depending on what you want to achieve. It’s important to note that there is no guaranteed way to keep someone safe from an online attack. There are different kinds of cyberattacks and protective methods, but network firewalls are one of the ways you can work towards safeguarding your devices and network as a whole.

Think of a firewall as a foundational layer in a multi-layered approach to limiting your overall attack surface.

Do I still need a network firewall if everything is in the cloud?

A common question that comes up when talking with people about network security is: If everything is in the cloud, do I still need a network firewall?

The short and most straightforward answer is YES!

Let’s take a moment and imagine that you are home on your favorite laptop, desktop, or mobile device of choice. You are sitting there working for hours at a time and you think to yourself “I’m sure glad that I keep everything in secure storage and not right here next to me”.

Now imagine that everything you moved to a secure building somewhere in this scenario represents cloud services for imagination’s sake. A network firewall is like putting a complete digital security system that includes automatic door locks, cameras, security gates, motes, attack dogs, etc., around your home.

In contrast, not having a firewall is like living in this same house without even something as basic as a door that locks. Now picture that your home is in the middle of the highest crime area in a country with no civil security protection services of any type.

Ask yourself two questions:

  1. Which scenario would you feel the safest living in?
  2. Would you invite your clients over and would they feel safe?

When you leave yourself open for anyone to come into your home (a.k.a your computer), they can look around and watch what and how you work. From there, a cybercriminal can develop a plan to exploit vulnerabilities.

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